Grandfather clocks

Grandfather Clocks Repair

10.11.12

Grandfather Clocks owners sooner or later, with or without regularly scheduled grandfather clock maintenance including oiling and cleaning, will need to address the inevitable grandfather clock repair challenge or question.  We sell many brands of floor clocks, including Howard Miller grandfather clocks, Hermle Floor Clocks and Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks and the Kieninger Floor Clock collection.  Even these best of the best grandfather clock makers will find their customers in need of clock time adjustments, grandfather clock movement refurbishing of pivots and pallets, the occasional manual adjustment that may need to be made inside the grandfather clock case or movement or pendulum or pendulum bob or even to a damaged or worn finish or wood of the outside of a grandfather clock case.

In today’s more modern world, good grandfather clock repair help can be difficult to find.  Interestingly, after a rapid decline in the number of people able and qualified to repair timepieces including pocket watches, wristwatches and mechanical grandfather clocks, there seems to have been something of a renaissance in the number and quality of available repair people.  Some schools of horology, the study of timepieces, have revamped and added new classes and certifications, and the demand appears clearly present both for the apprentices in training as well as the eager customers on the other end.

Owners of mechanical mantel clocks and wall clocks and grandfather and grandmother clocks, whether made by Howard Miller Clocks or Hermle Clocks or Ridgeway or Kieninger or Americana Clocks will and should want only qualified clocks technicians to be working on their movements.  If a grandfather clock was made by a major established floor clock company, such as Howard Miller or Hermle or Ridgeway, there is an excellent chance that the preferred method for fixing the mechanical clock might be to simply exchange the old movement for an equivalent new one.  The repair can be less expensive.  One factor, though, that can catch people by surprise, is that grandfather clock makers have gradually effectively lowered the fixed volume level on grandmother clocks and grandfather clocks in recent years.  This has been done to meet changing consumer preferences and with more household items, especially electronics,vying potentially for attention at the very same times.  We get occasionally very puzzled calls from long-time clock owners and enthusiasts who do not understand why their new grandfather clock is softer in volume than their old one, lower in volume than the Howard Miller grandmother clock in the home of their Aunt Shirley.

Another piece of advice we give, and yes we do repair clocks ourselves so this might sound purely in our self-interest, but the reality is that repairs can take a long long time, frequently much longer than originally anticipated.  And yet we live in an I want it tomorrow culture, or a what could be so complicated approach on the part of customers.  It’s all about setting and managing and understanding reasonable expectations and drivers.  Frequently new parts may not arrive on time.  Sometimes they have to be hand made, which can be very expensive.  Most all repairs require multiple levels of quality control testing.  Sometimes the problem is difficult to isolate.  Sometimes a spare part may not be readily available and yet can be obtained with diligent follow-up on the part of the grandfather clock repair person, yet at the same time frustrating to the actual owner of the clock.  Reasonable expectations and communication are key.  I frequently tell customers do not ask us to fix it if you will be unhappy if it might take 2-3 months, because that may be necessary and realistic.  It’s a delicate balancing act!

Finding a grandfather clocks repair specialist reasonably local to you can be a challenge.  There are a variety of sources, including the Yellow Pages, the Better Business Bureau (of which we are proud members), membership organization like the National Association of Clock and Watch Collectors, the American Clock and Watch Institute (of which we are also proud members), and a good online database at Howard Miller Clocks website which is searchable by both zip code and state.  Keep in mind whether you are repairing a new or antique grandfather clock or wall clock or mantel clock, and what the specialty of any candidate grandfather clock repair person might be, as they may require different knowledge bases and skills.

Still looking for grandfather clock repair advice.  Always feel free to give us a call at 1-800-4CLOCKS.com.

Kieninger model NS Movement -

Precision Kieninger clock cable movement with 8 rubies and 6 bronze bushings, Graham steel pallet lever escapement, automatic beat adjustment, maintaining power & seconds indication.

Chiming Grandfather Clocks

09.27.12

There are essentially 4 kinds of chiming grandfather clocks, three of which are mechanical grandfather clocks based, and one of which is quartz or battery based. By far the 2 most common high-end heirloom quality mechanical chiming grandfather clock types are cable driven grandfather clocks and chain driven mechanical clocks. Chain driven mechanical grandfather clocks generally will have the Westminster Chime as the sole chime, a chime-silence option, a faux or fake, meaning non-moving moondial or moonophase dial, and an 8 day movement which can be wound weekly by pulling down on each of the 3 chains which brings up each of the 3 weights. Some of the best makers of grandfather clocks, including Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks and Ridgeway Floor Clocks and Hermle Grandfather Clocks, plus Kieninger Clocks, all feature chain-driven clocks in their offerings.

Having said that, generally considered one step up in terms of not only durability, but also chime and feature options, are cable-driven grandfather clocks. These clocks also have 8 day movements. While almost all of them will have the famous Big Ben Westminster Chimes, they will also have some combination of Whittington Chimes, Ode to Joy, Ave Maria, St Michaels and BimBam chimes. The movements, with proper care and in our experience should last 50-100+ years with proper care and maintenance. Cable-driven grandfather clocks tend to be put in heavier and more durable and ornate solid wood cases, and are also frequently taller clocks, partly because the cable-driven movement is larger than the chain-driven movement. Options available to retail grandfather clock shoppers looking for grandfather clocks on sale and discount grandfather clocks tend to multiply with cable driven grandfather clocks. Want automatic-nightime shut-off on your grandfather clock? You will need to buy a cable-driven grandfather clock. What about a working rotating moonphase dial? Again, most all of your choices will be on cable-driven mechanical chiming floor clocks. Want a grandfather clock with an illuminated dial or a light in the cabinet of the grandfather clock. Again, you will be looking at cable=driven grandfather clocks. This is true for Ridgeway Grandfather Clocks, Howard Miller Grandfather and Howard Miller Grandmother Clocks, as well as Hermle Floor Clocks and Kieninger Grandfather Clocks.

The 3rd category of chiming mechanical grandfather clock is the most expensive, by far, least understood by the general public, with the fewest models made. They are generally sold in limited quantities importantly, aside from the expense factor, because grandfather clock shoppers looking for grandfather clocks on sale are not even aware of the existence of this type of grandfather clocks, and there are even relatively few people who can service and repair them throughout the country. These are tubular chime grandfather clocks. The grandfather clock movement’s mechanism will generally trike either 5 or 9 hammers of 5 or 8 tubular chime pipes of varying lengths (each with a different note), with the Westminster Chime requiring 5 tubes and 5 hammers and the Whittington and St Michael’s grandfather clock chimes requiring 9 hammers and 9 tubes of different lengths, each playing different required notes. Tubular chimes tend to resonate more deeply, with a much lower pitch and a longer lasting musical note length frequency. The makers of these clocks are also Howard Miller Clocks, Kieninger Grandfather Clocks, Hermle Grandfather Clocks and Ridgeway Grandmother and Grandfather Clocks. Also worth a special look are the Americana Grandfather Clock brand which we plan to be adding to our retail operations and website within the next week or so.

The 4th type of grandfather clock and grandmother clock or floor clock movement, which is the quartz or battery operated grandfather clock movement. Here there can be many features, but the smart grandfather clocks shopper wants to be especially sure they are not buying a piece of junk. More and more cheap imports are flooding the markets for quartz grandfat5gher clocks. this is also true to a certain degree for the mechanical grandfather clocks. We would recommend only buying from a reputable authorized dealer for a known maker, and most definitely NOT because the model name sounds familiar and NOT because the clock looks so much like one made by a respected high-end maker. We get too many calls from “suckers” who have just purchased clocks that “look like” clocks on our website, or have similar model names, but when they get home and open the packaging, their is no operational booklet, no number to call for help OR there is major assembly required which will lead to who knows what. People then sometimes end up throwing good money after bad.

We are here to help those looking for heirloom quality grandfather clocks discounts and grandmother clocks on sale. Just call us with your questions. No hard sell. We simply want to Add Time to your Life™ with a clock you and your loved ones will cherish for generations to come.

Hermle Grandfather Clock Model 01166-Q20461 (01166Q20461)

Grandfather Clocks Parts

09.19.12

While our vast selection of high-end heirloom quality grandfather clocks are comprised of many parts, we do not sell parts for individual grandfather clocks.  There are many grandfather clock repair and authorized service centers for floor clocks, but we will suggest other places if a customer is looking for parts for a grandfather clock or grandmother clock.

We will and do, however, service and repair grandfather clocks and wall clocks and mantel clocks, both new and antique clocks.  Each clock type and clock is an individual, and depending upon the clock’s circumstance, we would recommend a different course of treatment, which might or might not include us.  And yes we do on occasion make grandfather clock house calls just like the old fashioned family doctor.  Fir some mantel clocks and wall clocks repairs, depending upon the issue, the customer, the distance, the budget and other variables, we will sometimes make home visits as the grandfather clock doctor, or for the more junior wall clocks and mantel clock generation.

We even will help select customers, assuming the geography works out for us all, move a grandfather clock,  Failing that, we are generally happy to advise individuals on how to move a grandfather clock, both on the dos and the do nots or dont’s.

Back on grandfather clocks parts, if you call us at our toll free tore number 1-800-4CLOCKS (1-800-425-6257) the voice menu will actually give you prerecorded messages if you are looking for clock parts, including winding keys.  We get no benefit from referring customers to these grandfather clocks parts and other clock parts suppliers and retailers, and it is a more efficient way of us being able to help our customers in one of the few ways we choose not to do ourselves.

Let’s take some of the most frequently asked for clock parts, both for grandfather clocks, as well as key-wound mantle and wall clocks.  Hands down the winner is a winding crank key for a grandfather clock, usually for Howard Miller Clocks or Ridgeway Clocks, with a grandfather clock or grandmother clock door key being the next runner up.  As we deal in antique pocket watches, wristwatches, and antiques in general, we also get request for pocket watch winding keys, as well as mechanical wall clocks and mantel clock winding keys.

Most collectors of antique clocks, including high-end grandfather clocks and mantel clocks and wall clocks, and yes pocket watches too, do not realize that there are basically a dozen sizes of clock keys, one of which will fit almost all American or European grandfather clocks, grandmother clocks, wall clocks, and mantle or mantel clocks made.  The same is true, with a smaller size set of 12 keys, for antique American and European pocket watches, including famous makers like Elgin pocket watches and the Waltham and Hamilton Watch companies, not to mention the many incredible Swiss, French, and British makers, among others.

So the good news is if you need the most popular or sought after grandfather clocks part, it should be very easy to locate at a grandfather clock or Floor Clocks supplier near you, or one whom 1-800-4CLOCKS can and does recommend.

Grandfather Clocks Parts needed - call 1-800-4CLOCKS.com and listen

Big Ben Clock Tower as Elizabeth Tower

08.10.12

The story has been reported, coinciding roughly with the Olympics, that the Big Ben Clock Tower in London will soon be renamed Elizabeth Tower in honor of Queen Elizabeth.  We somehow doubt the Big Ben Clock name change will really sink in, as tradition and history play such a vital role in a country, and in this case, the world’s psyche.  The Big Ben Clock Tower in London’s House of Parliament is thought of by much of the globe as the world’s grandfather clock.

The clock history story and perspective and future dedication have a story that goes like this.

The iconic Clock Tower of Britain’s Parliament-home of the famous “Big Ben” will officially be renamed in honor of Queen Elizabeth II.

Shall we rename our upcoming Big Ben Grandfather Clocks collection the Elizabeth Grandfather Clock Collection.  We think we will wait and see what happens in terms of the adoption of the name in horological and the general lexicon over time, both in the UK and globally.

The 315 ft.-high structure, one of Britain’s most famous landmarks, will officially be titled “Elizabeth Tower.”  This is part of a recent effort by British lawmakers to celebrate the monarch’s 60 years on the throne.   A House of Commons Commission statement stated that official actions are being taken to ensure that the new tower name will be implemented in an appropriate manner in due course.  Construction of the tower was completed in 1858.  It houses a four-faced chiming clock and the famed 13-ton Big Ben bell.

British Prime Minister David Cameron recently announced that the new name was a “fitting tribute to the Queen and the service she has given our country.”

It was generally agreed by those within British government that the honor was a fitting recognition of Queen Elizabeth’s lifetime of dedication and tireless service.

No date or time yet as to when this Big Ben Tower Clock name change may, or we should say rather will, take place.

London’s Big Ben Clock Tower to be known as Elizabeth Tower in honor of Queen Elizabeth

Shop Grandfather Clock

03.13.12

When shopping for grandfather clocks, would be shop grandfather clocks consumers have a dizzying array of grandfather clock makers, styles, movement types such as cable-driven vs chain driven vs quartz driven, and before even getting into the grandfather clock brands available such as Howard Miller grandfather clocks, Hermle Grandfather Clock collection, Ridgeway grandfather clocks, and the Museum Clocks&#0153 Grandfather Clock Collection.

At 1-800-4CLOCKS.com, we pride ourselves in providing only high-quality brands and the best grandfather clocks discounts, with the lowest prices grandfather clocks guaranteed.  We focus not only on providing the best grandfather clocks values, but also only carry grandfather clock makers such as Howard Miller, Museum Clocks&#0153, Ridgeway Clocks, Hermle Floor Clocks and Kieninger grandfather clocks.  Sadly, both internet sites and brick and mortar retail clock stores, especially mass merchandisers, are being flooded with cheap imports that are designed explicitly to look like some of the high-end models, but the materials, construction, workmanship and the quality of the movement leave a tremendous amount to be desired.  Frequently major assembly may be required, surprise, and rather than the heirloom quality with a clock lasting 50-100 plus years, as the clocks we typically sell do with proper care and maintenance, the grandfather clock may for practical purposes may be dead on arrival.  We get so many calls from people who have bought these clocks, which frequently have model names by others makers of clocks that we do sell, asking for an owners manual because they do not know how to get it going, or because they cannot figure out the most basic of operations.

We always encourage our grandfather clock shoppers who are always on the lookout for the best discount grandfather clocks, to call us or visit us and ask us about any questions they might have.  We are happy to be a resource for grandfather clock shoppers near and far, and the fact that we offer Free Shipping, Free In-Home Set-up, and No Sales Tax outside of New York, along with the Low Price Guarantee as explained on our website, there is frequently no reason not to ultimately purchase your choice heirloom grandfather clock from 1-800-4CLOCKS.

Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks

Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks

Museum Clocks™ Grandfather Clock Collection

Museum Clocks™ Grandfather Clock Collection

Hermle Grandfather Clocks Setup Instructions

12.09.11

Table of

Contents

I. Location for the clock………………….5

II. Unpacking the clock…………………..5

III. Putting the clock into operation………….6

A. Remove the shipping material………..6

B. Unpacking the pendulum……………6

C. Hanging the pendulum……………..6

D. Attaching the weights………………6

E. Setting the moon phase (if applicable) …. 7

IV. The Movement………………………8

A. Shut off………………………….8

B. Night shut off…………………….8

C. Chime selection……………………9

D. Setting the time……………………9

E. Starting the pendulum……………..10

V. Regulation of the clock……………….10

VI. Winding the clock……………………11

A. Chain driven movement……………11

B. Cable driven movement……………11

C. Autowind™ movement…………….12

VII. Disturbances……………………….12

A. Synchronization hour strike…………12

B. Hammer adjustments………………13

C. Volume of chime/strike…………….14

VIII. In case you move……………………14

IX. Care and Maintenance………………..15

IMPORTANT: PLEASE USE COTTON GLOVES WHEN HANDLING BRASS COMPONENTS OF CLOCKS

I. Choosing a location for your clock.

When choosing a location, please consider the following: The clock must have a flat and level surface. Please check this with a box beam level. Avoid placing the clock in direct sunlight. The volume of the chimes is affected by the size of the room, carpeting, drapes, etc. (The volume is louder in an unfurnished room).

II. Unpacking the clock

Please use 2 people to unpack the clock. After unpacking from the carton, place the clock next to the final position.

1) The weights are packed in a separate box, underneath the clock in the clock carton. Be careful when handling the weights as these are extremely heavy. (Remember to use the gloves before handling any brass parts.)

2) The pendulum is packed separately and is attached to the back of the clock cabinet.

3) The tubes (if your clock is equipped with a tubular movement) are packed in a separate box.

4) Winding crank (only needed for cable driven movements) is placed inside the clock carton at the top of the clock. If the clock has a finial, you will also find it in this box. The door key is also in this carton.

5) Make sure that you do not discard any parts accidentally.

6) We suggest that you save the original packing material for future use, in case you move.

III. Putting the clock in operation

A. Removal of the packing material

Open the door or panels located on the upper sides of the clock. This gives you access to the movement and enables you to remove the packing material. Remove the packing material on the gong rods by sliding it down. Cut and remove the rubber band between the movement and the pendulum leader. It will be necessary to run your clock for 3 days so that the packing material will be completely accessible and easily removable.

B. Unpacking the pendulum

Carefully open the box so that you won’t damage the pendulum. Remove the protective film on the bob face before hanging the pendulum onto the leader.

C. Hanging the pendulum

Be careful when hanging the pendulum on the leader. (See figure B) There is a small suspension spring located above the leader that could break if the leader on the pendulum is handled roughly.

D. Attaching the weights

• Chain driven movement

Remove the wire which was used to secure your chains

during shipping. The clock must be in an upright position so that the chains will not fall out of the movement. Your clock is equipped with 3 weights. The heaviest weight always needs to be on the right hand side (while facing the front of the clock). Remember to use cotton gloves when handling any brass parts.

• Cable driven movements It will be necessary to run your clock 3 days prior to removing the packing material between the cable pulleys and the movement. Keep the packing material for future use. Make sure that the heaviest weight is always hung on the right hand side (while facing the clock). See figure A.

• If you have an Autowind™ movement follow the steps listed above in the “Cable Driven Movement.” Also see the Autowind™ section on Page 12. If not, move on to the next bullet point.

E. Setting the moon phase

The moon dial corresponds with the lunar month (29 1/2 days) and not the calendar month. As long as the clock is in permanent operation, the moon dial will operate automatically. If the clock stops, you will have to reset the moon dial.

CAUTION: If you attempt to set the moon disc and it does not move easily, the gears are in the process of making a moon change. Do not set the moon disc during this moon change that occurs every night between 9:00 pm and 3:00 am.

To set the moon dial, rotate the moon disc (in the upper part of the dial) clockwise (right) until the moon face is below the 15 on the dial. Check with your calendar for the date of the last full moon. Using a soft cotton cloth or cotton gloves, rotate the moon disc to the right (clockwise). As you rotate the disc you will hear a clicking sound. One click represents a 24 hour day of the lunar month. Example: If the moon is six days after the full moon you have to move 6 clicks. The setting of the moon dial is your responsibility and is not covered under our warranty.

Figure A

Moon Dial Back side of dial-Moon disc

IV. The movement

A. Chime Shut off

Every Hermle grandfather clock is equipped with a chime shut off lever. The shut off lever is located on the dial near the 3:00 position. Note: When the movement is in the shut off mode, the two outside weights will not drop.

B. Automatic Night shut off (if equipped)

When activated, the automatic night shut off will shut off the chime and strike from 9:45 pm to 7:00 am. The night silence lever is located below the movement to the right and underneath the dial. See figure C. Please note: top position^night silence on (no chiming), lower position=night silence off (clock is chiming 24 hours). If chime stops in the morning (a.m.) and restarts in the evening (p.m.) please advance the hands 12 hours. Note: When the movement night shut off is activated, the two outside weights will not drop during the shut off period.

C. Chime Selection

Hermle clocks feature different melodies. Some models only have Westminster chime, while others have 3 melodies (Westminster, St. Michael and Whittington).On clocks with 3 melodies, you can select the melody you prefer with the selector lever which is located at the 3:00 position on the dial. See figure D. Make sure that the lever has a fixed position and is not between 2 melodies. Always wait until the clock has finished chiming before changing to a different melody. Failure to follow these instructions may cause movement malfunctions not covered under our warranty.

D. Setting the time

Set the clock to the correct time by turning the minute (longest) hand clockwise or counter clockwise. After you have set the time, the quarter chime may be off. If this happens, the clock will synchronize itself within 1 hr and 45 minutes. Always avoid turning the hour (shortest) hand. If the hour hand is moved out of position, your clock will strike the wrong hour. If this happens, see section VII A.

Night Silence Lever

Figure D

Chime Selector Lever

E. Starting the Pendulum

Move the pendulum to the left or right side of the cabinet (without letting the bob touch the sides of the case) and release. You will hear a tick tock sound. After a few minutes the swinging motion will settle into its rhythmic beat. We recommend that you follow this procedure whenever you wind the clock.

V. Regulating the time

The distance between the pendulum bob and pallet anchor is very important. You can adjust this distance by turning the regulating nut found below the pendulum bob. If you turn the nut to the right, the bob will raise and the time will speed up. If you turn the nut to the left, the bob will lower and the time will slow down. Whenever you make this adjustment, please hold the pendulum with your other hand to avoid any damage on the suspension spring. See figure E.

:

Pendulum Bob

Regulating Nut

Figure E

ATTENTION: One complete turn of the regulating nut in either direction=approximately 1 minute every 24 hours.

VI. Winding the clock

The weights create the energy to operate your clock. In order for your clock to run continuously, you must wind (raise) the weights before the weights rest at the bottom of the cabinet. Follow either option A or B depending on what movement your clock is equipped with.

A. Chain driven movements

1). Hold the free end of the chain firmly and gently pull it straight down. CAUTION: Avoid pulling the chain towards you. This will cause the links of the chain to open. Do not attempt to lift up the weight by hand while winding as this will cause the chain to come off of the chain wheel.

2) Use a slow even motion when raising the weights. Do not jerk the chain or release the weight suddenly as this could break the chain. Gently raise the weights until it is not possible to raise them any higher.

3) If you plan to be away from home for more than a few days, stop the pendulum from swinging until you return. The clock will then need to be restarted as described under section IV. (Don’t forget to set the moon and calendar if equipped.)

B. Cable driven movements

1) While winding the clock do not touch or lift the weights. Also do not allow the weights to swing. If you do not follow these instructions carefully, it may result in overlapped or broken cables which are not covered under our warranty.

If you have an Autowind™ movement, please see the Autowind™ section on winding your movement manually.

2) Insert the winding crank onto each winding arbor and turn slowly until you come to a stop. It is impossible to over wind a cable driven movement.

3) If you plan to be away from home for more than a few days, stop the pendulum from swinging until you return. The clock will then need to be restarted as described under section IV. (Don’t forget to set the moon and calendar if equipped).

4) Store the winding crank in a safe location. C. Autowind™ movement

1) Read the previous steps in this manual for setup and startup instructions.

2) Let your new Autowind™ clock run for 48 hours under normal power of the weights.

DO NOT PLUG your clock into a power source before completing step #3

3) Carefully remove cardboard inserts from around the cables and pulleys.

4) Plug the power cord into an electrical outlet.

5) Once connected to an outlet, the clock will start to Autowind™ and do so approximately every 3 days.

Caution: If you feel the need to manually wind your clock, use the enclosed key and wind only until the top of the weights and the pulleys are still visible through the glass.

Warning: Failure to follow these instructions will result in permanent damages and void your warranty.

VII. Disturbances

If the clock stops during setting or winding, start the pendulum again. (See section IV. E) A. Synchronization of the hour strike

If the hour strike and hour hand do not correspond you will need to make this adjustment. Example: The clock shows 4 but it strikes 3 times. Follow these instructions to correct this issue.

1) Do not silence the chimes while making these adjustments.

2) Move the hour hand (shortest) clockwise or counterclockwise, whichever is more convenient, slowly to the hour that has actually struck. Example: If the clock strikes only 3 times, move the hour hand slowly until it points directly to the 3. You will notice that the hour hand turns independently of the minute hand.

3) Then turn the minute hand (longest) counterclockwise, slowly until the proper time setting is reached. Be careful, do not touch the hour hand and misadjust it again.

4) The chime will now synchronize itself automatically. This could take up to 1 hour and 45 minutes.

B. Hammer adjustments

These adjustments are made at the factory; however, if during unpacking or handling the hammer becomes misaligned, they may need to be readjusted. When adjusting the hammers to the gong rods, each hammer should be 2mm from the gong rod. See figure F. Make sure that the hammer hits slightly below the taper of the rod. If an adjustment needs to be made, be sure to make the adjustment by only bending the upper 1/3 of the hammer wire. •

FAILURE TO FOLLOW THIS INSTRUCTION COULD CAUSE MALFUNCTIONS WHICH ARE NOT COVERED UNDER OUR WARRANTY.

C. Volume of chime/strike

Below are suggestions on how to change the volume of your clock.

1) A clock placed on carpet has a softer sound than one placed on tile or hardwood floors.

2) Placing the clock flat against the wall will cause the chime to be louder.

3) The hammer heads should be approximately 2 mm from the gong rods. The more space you have between the rods and the hammer heads, the less sound you will have. See figure F.

4) The size of a room makes a difference in the volume of the chimes. A clock placed in a hall or foyer will sound louder than the same clock placed in a large room with carpet and drapes.

An aspect about the chimes:

Your clock was primarily made to tell time. It is not a musical instrument. Chime tone will vary from clock to clock according to the wood used to make the sound board and how much moisture is in the wood. The gong rods are automatically tuned and no adjustments are necessary.

VIII. If you move

NOTE: Please use cotton gloves when handling the brass parts.

1) Stop the pendulum from swinging.

2) Wind up clock (do not wind until you read instructions below.)

CAUTION: NEVER WIND THE CLOCK WITHOUT THE WEIGHTS ATTACHED. When arriving at your new location, follow the set up instructions as described at the beginning of the manual.

* Chain driven movement

Wind the weights 1/2 way to the top. Attach a wire through the chain links to secure the chains. Make sure that the chain does not scratch the case during transport. Use the packing material that came with your clock.

• Cable driven movement

Using the packing material which came with your clock, wind up all three weights. See figure A.

3) Remove the weights and place them back in their shipping box.

4) Remove the pendulum and package it back in its shipping box.

IX. Care and Maintenance

Your new Hermle Clock does not require very much maintenance. However, you may wish to follow the suggestions listed below.

A. Wind your clock once a week, unless you own an Autowind™ clock.

B. Polish or wax the wooden components of your clock case just like you would any other fine piece of furniture. Avoid direct sunlight. This could cause the wood to split and the finish to fade. Do not use any type of cleaner, polish, water, etc. to clean the brass parts of your clock. If necessary, clean the brass components with a lint free, dry cloth. Clean glass, as necessary with a glass cleaner.

C. Periodically you need to make sure that your clock is still level. You can make adjustments by turning the leveling feet

located underneath the clock case.

>

D. Periodically check to make sure that your weights are still tightly assembled.

E. Approximately every 3-5 years, it will be necessary to

15

Heirloom Grandfather Clocks

10.29.11

When considering the purchase of a grandfather clock, the single most important criterion for many is that it be an heirloom quality grandfather clock that can be passed along to their children and grandchildren and beyond.  This is not a far fetched goal.  As the author of this blog post sits here, he has a few feet away from him a chiming antique mantel clock that was made in England in the mid-1700s and looks as though it could have been made yesterday.  Even closer is a grandfather clock made by the Waltham Clock and Watch Company, most known for pocket watches but they also made some super high-end quality clocks, made over a hundred years ago and signed on its dial by Tiffany and Company.  This particular clock was special-ordered by none-other than the founder of Coca Cola as a wedding gift for his daughter.  She kept it for her whole life, including keeping it in the lobby of the downtown Atlanta hotel she lived in during the later part of her life.

Even today it is possible to buy grandfather clocks that with proper care and maintenance should last 100 years and possibly much longer.  While we could guarantee it, it would not be a meaningful guarantee for obvious reasons.  The sad reality is that many grandfather clocks sold today may not last more than a few years.  the good news is that all the makers and brands we carry are of the highest quality and construction, and depending upon the type, would fall into the category of the kind of clock that should truly be an heirloom quality grandfather clock that can be passed along through many many generations.

And this is not to say that you still should not seek grandfather clock discounts, and we frequently have many of these grandfather clocks on sale.  Visit one of our 1-800-4CLOCKS store locations and you may even get a better discount.

So who are the makers of these highest quality grandfather clocks?  One is a brand we introduced and will soon be featuring much more prominently on our website and known as Museum Clocks Grandfather Clocks.  Other brands include Howard Miller grandfather clocks, the Ridgeway grandfather clock collection, Hermle grandfather clocks, and Kieninger grandfather clocks. Grandfather clock makers that people still think of today but no longer, at least as we write this, produce grandfather clocks, include Seth Thomas grandfather clocks, Sligh grandfather clocks and Bulova grandfather clocks.  While these grandfather clock collections featured some clocks which were very high quality, for different reasons each of these makers exited the grandfather clocks market.  We would not be at all surprised if one or more of these brands is resurrected in the coming years once again producing grandfather clocks.

Want to know more about the different types of grandfather clock movements and grandfather clocks brands, please let us know.

Museum Grandfather Clocks™ Grandfather Clock

Used Grandfather Clocks

04.04.11

Should one purchase a new grandfather clock?  What about a so-called used antique grandfather clock.  Antique grandfather clocks are used grandfather clocks, are they not?  Are the floor clocks made in the last 20 or 30 or 50 years as good as the new grandfather clocks made today, by such makers as Howard Miller Clocks, Ridgeway Clocks, and Hermle Clocks.   Howard Miller Grandfather Clocks, Ridgeway Floor Clocks, and Hermle Grandfather Clocks and Grandmother Clocks are among the most popular high-end brands on the market today.  Interestingly, these same grandfather clock makers have each been manufacturing grandfather clocks for nearly a century or more.

So what is an educated grandfather clock shopper looking for the best selection and savings to do?  When considering new vs. used grandfather clocks, we think it is best to compare “apples to apples”, meaning to compare for example a new howard miller grandfather clock to a pre-owned or used howard miller grandfather clock, or a new hermle grandfather clock to a pre-owned hermle grandfather clock.  Given the many thousands of makers of antique grandfather clocks and antique grandmother clocks, trying to compare a new or used howard miller grandfather clock to an antique grandfather clock would require the comparison of a dizzying array of details which would be at best difficult to compare.

So should one seriously consider buying a pre-owned or used grandfather clock, such as a howard miller grandfather clock.  We would suggest the same caution a smart shopper would or should use when considering shopping for a new or pre-owned automobile.  The most basic tenet being sure one knows what one is purchasing, and ideally also getting a “no lemon” guarantee or a guarantee that lasts for a meaningful amount of time.

The risk is that one buys a money pit, and throws good money after bad in trying to get one’s grandfather clock, whether made my howard miller or ridgeway or hermle or kieninger, to run as well as it did when it was new, and to have the longevity that would come with a new grandfather clock.  Also like automobiles, if a grandfather clock is not well cared for, one will end up paying a lot more over time in grandfather clock maintenance and for grandfather clock repairs.

At 1-800-4CLOCKS.com, we have to date resisted the temptation of offering pre-owned or used howard miller grandfather clocks that would also come with a warranty we would offer, as but one example of offering used grandfather clocks.

But as with most things in life, we are keeping our grandfather clock options open.

Grandfather Clocks Antique

02.20.11

When shopping for a grandfather clock, most grandfather clocks shoppers look only at brand new floor clocks, recognizing that if they purchase a high quality grandfather clock, such as those made by Howard Miller Clocks and Hermle Clocks and the Ridgeway Clock Company, the grandfather clock will have all of the features they might reasonably want, and there should be immediately be a working grandfather clock which will peform all of its functions, including timekeeping and chiming, with little chance of breakdown for many years.

When one is considering an antique grandfather clock, one has to be both very knowledgeable about not only the authenticity of the grandfather clock, but also its inner workings, functionality, and restoration or maintenance that may be required.  Buying an antique grandfather clock without the benefit of expert input can be compared legitimately to buying a used car when one knows nothing about cars and their inner mechanisms or how to spot signs of previous accidents, changed engines, and more.

While we love antique clocks, and have sold many hundreds if not many thousands of them, a respectable honest clock dealer should be very up-front about all the issues that currently do or soon may accompany the grandfather clock.  There are two big risks.  One is that the antique grandfather clock or antique grandmother clock that you are buying may not be all original, known in the clocks trade as a marriage, and therefore may be relatively worthless as a collectors item.  The second biggest risk is that one may be finding themselves being the proud owner of a grandfather clock project, which may not only be a money pit, but also a time pit as well.

If one goes into purchasing antique grandfather clocks with the right kind of knowledge and eyes wide open, it can be a tremendously rewarding experience.  The same holds true for antique wall clocks, and mantle clocks antique as well.  But no what you are getting yourself into.

The other trade-off to consider between antique grandfather clocks and a new, say, Howard Miller grandfather clock, is that at the same price point, one will get an infinitely more fancy case and wordwork, and many more features such as auto night shut-off, a working moonphase or moondial on the clock, westminster chimes or even triple chimes, and perhaps a lit dial or lit cabinet.  If all of these features existed on a comparable antique grandfather clock, the cost would likely be 10 times as much as the price for the new Howard Miller Clock or Ridgeway Grandfather Clock.  Many antique grandfather clocks and simply time and strike only, with the grandfather clock gonging on each hour for the number of hours representing the time.  One important difference in this regard is that most antique grandfather clocks will have a strike volume that may well be five to ten to twenty plus times higher than modern day cost.  The other factor to consider is resale value, with antique clocks, while requiring much more due diligence and perhaps investment of time and money, they are generally speaking, if one gets a good deal, more likely to be a good financial investment.  This is simply our opinion based on historical observations, and any single case may be different now, and most certainly so in the future.

Grandfather Clock Care

01.13.11

In the last 24 hours, this writer has talked with 2 different customers who were grandfather clock shopping, looking at new grandfather clocks.  They both had been quite satisfied with the previous grandfather clock brand they had purchased, yet each felt they needed a new clock.

Well, as it turned out, each of these customers had not had their grandfather clocks cleaned or oiled in the 20+ years  that each had owned their respective floor clock. And what about replacing the movement, because the cases were each in fine condition.  As it turned out, each of these customers, coincidentally, wanted to give away their existing grandfather clock to a friend or family member, and themselves upgrade to what each saw as a nicer grandfather clock.

Which leads to the point of this post, which is grandfather clock maintenance.  Any mechanical grandfather clock with any quality movement should be serviced, including a cleaning and oiling, at least once every three to five years. We get many calls from customers, who will frequently tell us that their grandfather clock stopped working after, say, 14 or 18 years.  And they had never had their clock serviced.  After many years, even in the best of circumstances, of nothing else, as the oil dries out in a mechanical movement, aside some additional friction which may be caused by dust and dirt build-up, this can then severely damage the mechanical movement.  Without getting into the technical details, this is why regular grandfather clock maintenance, and maintenance of all mechanical clocks, is so critical to the longevity of the clock.  This is true for mechanical wall clocks, mechanical mantel clocks, brackets clocks, grandmother clocks and more.

The very good news is that with proper maintenance, your mechanical chiming grandfather clock, such as those made by Howard Miller Clocks, Hermle Clock, or Ridgeway Clocks, should give you and your family many generations of pleasure as an heirloom quality object of art to be treasured time and time again.

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